…both figuratively and literally!
The name’s Chris, but I’ve been known as ‘Mush’ for over 30 years thanks to my last name. The nickname also describes my physique over the last 16 years, unfortunately. I feel like I’m the anomaly in this group. While it’s true that I completed my second half-marathon a few weeks ago, I am in no way what you would visualize when you think of a runner. I’m 5’8” and 255 lbs, which means A) I’ve got short legs – I take 3 steps for an average runner’s 1 step; and B) the pavement nearly cracks underneath me with every stride.
Sooooooo…why am I here? Well, I haven’t always been this way. I was an athlete in school, earning 9 varsity letters (3 in football, 3 in baseball, 2 in basketball, and 1 in track/field). I also attended the U.S. Air Force Academy for 3 years (voluntarily left near the end of my junior year when I realized it wasn’t for me).
I was extremely active, and I ate a lot because I needed the calories for the energy.
Then I left Air Force and went to Illinois State University. I quit being active, but I kept on eating. 8 months later, I had gained nearly 40 lbs. Throw in about ten more years, and I went from 185 at Air Force to 268.
I’ve yo-yo’ed down to about 215, but I’m usually around 240-250. I needed to do something, especially with heart disease present on both of my parents’ sides.
The decision to start running is a long story, and I've already written it over on my personal blog (click here if you want to read that story - it will open up a new window).
So, here I am, part of a running team comprised of absolutely AMAZING people! I'm still struggling with my weight, but I hope that this blog will help me take off the pounds so I can start training for my first ever full marathon. This is something that will probably not be accomplished in the next twelve months, and it pains me to think that I likely won't be participating in Marathon Weekend in Disney World in January 2013. Still, I plan to run...eventually, I plan to run a LOT this year as part of the weight loss process and to start the training to run farther than I've ever run before.
Other info about me? Well, I'm a father of 2 and husband of 1 (I don't think I got that backwards). I teach economics at the local university and community college, while also serving as an academic advisor and, for good measure to make sure I don't get bored with everything, I'm finishing up my Ph.D. (I'm in the 34th grade). We'll talk politics and beer later. I will warn y'all now that I tend to be A.D.D., which means the conversation could take a million twists and turns and ultimately make no sense at all when all is said and donLOOK, A QUARTER!!!